Because some secrets are just too good to keep to yourself....

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Letters To My Son

Dear Preston~
I can't believe that you are now 8 months!! It seems like just yesterday, that I was bursting with excitement, while putting you in your carseat to bring you home.  It was such a happy day for me.  So far, each month becomes my new favorite. I am loving all of the fun things we do together these days. Your personality is developing more and more each day.  Some words I would use to describe you right now are: silly, sweet, happy, determined, observant, playful.
You can be so silly sometimes. I think you get this from your Daddy. Daddy loves to be silly and often makes Mama laugh with his goofy antics.  This is one of the things I love most about him. I see Daddy be silly with you and I love it.  I think it is so important to have a sense of humor.  Life is too short to be serious all of the time.  Some of the looks you give me, make me laugh so hard.  Thank you for the gift of laughter.  You remind me to take time out to smile and laugh.
Often times, when people come up to say hi to you, you get kind of shy and bury your face into me.  I love your sweetness. There are times when I could just eat you up, you are so sweet.  Like, when i come into get you after a nap or in the mornings, you flash me a beautiful big smile.  Do you know how much that melts my heart?  It is moments like those that I dreamed of before I conceived you and when you were in my womb.  I cherish our sweet moments,  like when you stare at my face, and gently touch it, like you have never seen me before.  I love that.  You are also very good at giving hugs. I love it when I give you a hug, and you hold on.  It is your version of hugging back really tight....that is what I like to believe anyway :)  You are definitely a blankie boy.  You have about 4 blankies...and you definitely don't discriminate against any of them.  When we hold up your blankie, you are all smiles.  When we get rid of your paci next month, your blankie will safe our lives!! Don't ever stop being loving and sweet, Son.  They are great qualities to have in this world.
When your teeth aren't getting the best of you, you are such a happy boy.  So much of the time you have a smile on your face.  I love how these days, I can put you in front of your toys, and you will happily play by yourself. You love holding onto Mama and Daddy's hands, as we help you walk.  You also enjoy zipping around in your walker. You zoom around and try to get into all sorts of things.  Daddy's currently working on baby proofing the house :)  For some reason, you are attracted to all of the things you shouldn't be getting into, like the garbage can, the blinds, pebbles food and water bowls, and the cabinets.  I love your curiosity though....just means you are trying to learn all about your new world.
These days, when you want something, you are determined to get it {or into it}.  Some of the things that you are determined to get: cell phones, sunglasses, hats, hair {yes, even facial hair}, Pebbles, keys, and pretty much anything sparkly, colorful, noisy or bright.  You do your signature inch worm type crawl over to whatever it is that you want, and don't stop until you have it. If we take something away that you are enjoying, you get very upset and start crying.  At least you know what you want!!  Another way you show your determination, is when we are feeding you.  When you are done, you are DONE! You could be chowing down one minute, and the next, be waving your hands in front of your face.  This is your version of "all done", in sign language :)  Many times your food ends up all over the walls, mama's face and your hands, as a result.
When we go out to eat, for a walk, or to the grocery store you are mesmerized by everything around you.  You are so observant. You love watching other children and animals.  On our walks, you love watching the trees. Maybe it is because there are not a ton of them in Vegas, but whenever there is a tree swaying in the wind, you are glued to studying it.  Please do not lose this sense of wonder...learning and exploration are wonderful things.
You love to play and be played with.  One of your favorite games to play is, Peek-a-Boo.  It is a guaranteed way to make you laugh. Your could be upset and frustrated, but as soon as I bust out a, "Peek-a-boo!!", you start belly laughing. I love that silly little belly laugh. It is precious and melts my heart.  Some others games you like to play are Patty Cake, Bumble Bee (a tickling game) and you love getting raspberries on your belly. We laugh so much when we play! Always remember that laughter is the best medicine.  Some of your favorite toys right now are the stackable rings that Grandma J got you, your pool full of plastic balls, your maracas, your water bottle full of rice, books, and your plastic golf clubs (although they are way too big!).  Since your mean teeth are causing you pain, you also love anything you can chew on.  You especially like your boo boo ice monkey that Yia Yia got you.  I enjoy playing with you, love.  You make me so happy.
Thank you so much for bringing so much joy and happiness into my life. You brighten so many of Mama and Daddy's days.  Even on my worst day, you can make me smile. I can't wait to watch you grow, succeed, fail, and turn into the Man I hope you will be. One day, I hope you will know how much I love you.  You are a blessing in so many ways.  I love you so much, Preston!!


Your Mama xoxo

Monday, February 27, 2012

My 8 Month Love Bug

It was a few days after Valentine's Day, but I thought it was an appropriate theme for this months pictures.

Happy 8 Months Little Man!

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Our Week in Pictures


Off for a walk! We've had some amazing weather lately. It's been in the 70's almost everyday this week. 
On our way back from Lent Mass. Preston's first Ash Wednesday. Wonder what he gave up? ;)
Some pretty spring flowers that are sitting on my coffee table.

My sweet kitty, Dodger.
My crazy puppy, Pebbles.  {Please excuse her messy hair} 
Mr. Cool Guy, trying on Daddy's sunglasses.  He LOVES sunglasses....anytime they are in sight he is grabbing for them. 
Jake and I were lucky enough to sneak away on Saturday for a date night. We went to Brio for dinner and then Firefly for a drink.  We love our Baby Boy, but we also love a night out with each other. Thanks for babysitting, Kacey!  
Me and my Superman
Our attempt at a family picture. It makes me smile. We really need to learn how to use the timer on our camera!
Preston hanging out in the cart while we ran errands at Target.  
Hard at work playing :)
Poor guy, those teeth are really bothering him here. We can't wait for them to cut....any day now.

Hope you all enjoying your Sunday's with your loved ones.  Cheers to hoping you have a great Monday!

Friday, February 24, 2012

10 Things You Don't Know About Me

{10 Things You Didn't know About Me}

1.  I have two Sisters that are 12 and 11 years older than me. 
Needless to say, when my mom found out that she was pregnant with her third child at the age of 37, she was shocked. I was an oops, or a surprise, as I like to call it :) Heidi and Robin are my older Sister's.  Growing up as the youngest,  I looked up to my Sisters so much.  I wanted to be just like them.  They didn't always find this so cute, though, especially when they were stuck babysitting me ;)  At times, it felt like I had three Mom's, three different opinions and three sets of expectations.  Nowadays, though, since we have more in common {married, kids} we have become friends. I love my big sisters so much, and am thankful for our friendship and love.

2.  I am EXTREMELY (did I say extremely?)  afraid of heights.
 Growing up in Hawaii, I went on many outdoor adventures. My friends and I would hike a lot, and they all loved jumping off of waterfalls, cliffs, bridges, you name it. If it was high off the ground, they loved it!!  I, on the other hand was deathly affraid. I would hike up with them, but turn around and hike all the way back down, just so I didn't have to jump off. I hate the feeling I get in my stomach when I jump and free fall in the air.  My stomach goes into my throat, and it is so uncomfortable! Therefore, when I am up high somewhere, and feel as though I could fall, I get super scared. As a part of my 8th grade, "right of passage", I had to jump off a high pole that was a part of a ropes course.  Not only did I have to climb up a VERY high pole, I had to balance on the very narrow top. Both of my feet barely fit!!! My legs were shaking, and I couldn't look fear I might pass out.  I finally jumped, after crying and shaking for about 10 minutes. I screamed all the way down!

3. When I was 9, I witnessed & experienced the most powerful hurricane to hit Hawaii, in recorded history
On September 11th, 1992 Hurricane Iniki hit the island of Kauai.  I was 9. We lived in Kekaha, a sugar town on the west of the island.  I remember my Dad telling me a hurricane was coming, and we were going to his office, because if the winds got too strong we could go down into his vault.  It really scared me because I had never been through any type of natural disaster.  At one point, I remember looking out of the window, only to see a huge blue two ton dumpster bouncing across the street like a paper cup.  I saw palm trees split in half and fall to the ground.  It was then that I learned how strong of a force mother nature really was.  We learned later that it was a category 4 hurricane and had winds of 145 mph.  I remember seeing the road that went through town literally in chunks. We were without water for three weeks and electricity for three months. 

4.  I ran Collegiate Cross Country
Growing up I took up playing Volleyball when I was in 4th grade. I played until I was a senior in High School. My senior year, I got recruited to run Cross Country.  I thought that was the craziest idea I had ever heard. I was leery of the idea, but thought it was worth a shot. I didn't want to give up completely on volleyball, since I had invested so much of myself into it, but the idea of trying something new excited me.  For about a month, I went to cross country practice at 6:00am and Volleyball practice at 4pm.  After running a few races, and deciding that I enjoyed it, I ended my 8 year love affair with Volleyball.  I decided I liked Cross Country so much, that I ended up running in College. It was one of the best experiences of my life. I have never been physically challenged so much in my life.  I still enjoy running, but in much shorter distances ;)

5.  When I was in the 5th grade, I won $1000 from a McDonald's Monopoly Game
The Summer of my 5th Grade year, my parents and I went on a road trip across the US.  It was always my Dad's dream to travel across the United States, and see the beautiful sights of our country.  Along with playing endless games of I Spy and The License Plate Game, we would stop every now and again at McDonald's for Lunch. (Yes, I know....gross...but when you drive 800 miles in a day, sometimes it was the easiest and only option). I can't even remember what state we were in, but I remember peeling my sticker off, and seeing, "INSTANT WINNER:  $1000". I was in total shock! All I could do was tap my mom on the shoulder, and say, "MOM!! LOOK!!"  My Mom and Dad didn't think it was real! They went up to talk to the manager, and sure enough, it was! Being the responsible people my parents are, they didn't let me spend it how whatever I wanted. They made me invest it into a mutual fund.  It is still there to this day.

6. I had 53 students in my high school graduating class
I went to a small private high school, Seabury Hall, located on the slopes of Haleakala on Maui. It was a small ,"cheers" kind of campus, everybody knew your name.  Everyone knew everything about you, it was very hard to blend in, or keep secrets.  Sometimes I had only 8 students in a class.  It was a great school, and because of the small class sizes, you got great one on one time in the classroom. I had a very unique high school experience and got a great education.

7. I won the Religion and Philosophy Award my senior year of high school
Since I went to a small school, they did an awards ceremony for each senior class. There were about 15 awards given out to seniors. Majority of them were department head awards.  I happened to receive the Religion and Philosophy award.  I thoroughly enjoyed all of the books we read and the assignments that  were given.  I could completely relate to the topics that we studied. I also had a great teacher who taught me so much and helped me love what I was studying.

8. I hate to drive
I try to avoid driving at all costs. Obviously, when I am by myself, I drive if I need to go somewhere. If Jake is with me, he drives, ALWAYS.  I'm not exactly sure why I hate driving.  I just really do.

9.  I am REALLY bad at math
Ever since I started school I remember being bad at math.  Because of this, I HATE math.  It has never made sense to me.  I am not a formula person.  I hate that there is only one answer.  When I was in high school, I don't think I ever got above a C in math.  I had to go in for extra help, after school, so I could pass the tests.  It was horrible.  I do not miss math class. Give me a paper, I will gladly write it, and write it well. But NEVER ask me to take a math test ;)

10. I heart organization
Organization makes me happy.  I love it. I get very flustered when something is disorganized.  I can't think.  I like things in my home a certain way. Jake, my husband, can tell you all about it.  When we first moved in together, I think I may have driven him nuts.  I have my spices on Lazy Susan's- organized by baking, commonly used, and speciality spices. My closet is organized by color.  I have a toy basket in my car for Preston's toys, so they don' clutter up my backseat.  I have a tray on my vanity in my bathroom, that has all of my toiletries and cosmetics I use daily, so they don't clutter up my counter and medicine cabinet.  It just makes me feel like I have it together.

Hopefully, you learned at least one thing about me today.

Happy Friday, Friends :)

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Carter's Cowboy Western Themed First Birthday Bash

This past Saturday, we went to The Skabelund's, for their Son Carter's first birthday party.  My Mama friend, Stacy, did an amazing job organizing Carter's big day.  Let's face it, the first birthday is more for the parents, than it is for the kids.  For us Mama's, it is a special day. It means that our little one is no longer a baby {even though, they we will ALWAYS be a baby in our eyes ;)}.  It means we made it through the first year. All of those sleepless nights, teething, and monthly milestones.  It is a bittersweet day.  Stacy did a great job getting through it, along with throwing a fabulous party!!  Check out the pictures of the birthday bash below:
"The Saloon"....pre-party 
Other Side
The finished product
The cute decor.
These rice crispy treat were AH-MAZE-ING.  Not only are they adorable, they were delish!! She is nice enough to share her recipe:

Rice Crispy Treats on a Stick

1/4 cup salted butter
5 cups of mini marshmallows 
5 1/2 cups or rice krispies
Wilton candy melts
Lollipop sticks 
Cookie cutters of your choice
Cover an edged cookie sheet with parchment paper. Put the butter in a large pot and heat over low heat. Once the butter is melted, add the marshmallows and stir until the marshmallows are melted and creamy. Remove from heat and add the cereal. Mix until all of the cereal is coated. Pour the mixture onto the cookie sheet and spread evenly (here I used another sheet of parchment paper to place over the mixture and rolled it flat with a rolling pin). 
Let the treats cool for about an hour and then spray each cookie cutter with cooking spray (so they won't stick). Cut out the treats. At this point I inserted the lollipop  sticks and then let the treats air dry for another hour because I was concerned they wouldn't hold their shape if they were too moist. I flipped them a few times to make sure they dried evenly. Melt the candy melts according to the package. You can choose to dip the treats in the melted candy; I chose to spoon it onto the treats and spread it around. Allow the candy coating to dry and package them up! Enjoy!
Carter's Smash Cake.  Another delicious goodie.  It was an icebox cake.

Calia is REALLY enjoying her Rice Krispie Treat!
Sweet Shea, playing with a balloon
Jordan & Baby Greyson...he had the pretties eyes.
Stacy made this cute photo booth. She made cute props, red lips and mustaches, included ;)

Carter's Nonna & Grandpa trying them out!

The bowl of bandanas...everyone (who wanted) wore one
Carter's Dad & Grandpa, posing for me :)
The Big O-N-E year old
Al one year old boy, in a red Radio Flyer much more classic can it get?
The Men and the Babes
The happy party guests. Enjoying all of the western food and drink ;)
Thank you Stacy, Jake, and Carter for such an amazing afternoon.  Carter, it has been a joy getting to know this past year. You are such a happy boy that brings so much happiness to your Mama & Daddy's life. You have a beautiful smile that is so contagious. I hope that you and Preston grow up to be good friends...just try not to get into too much trouble ;)